clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

How to watch NASA’s Perseverance rover land on Mars today

“If there’s one thing we know, it’s that landing on Mars is never easy,” NASA’s associate administrator for communications said

This image made available by NASA shows the planet Mars. This composite photo was created from over 100 images of Mars taken by Viking Orbiters in the 1970s. In our solar system family, Mars is Earth’s next-of-kin, the next-door relative that has c
This image made available by NASA shows the planet Mars. This composite photo was created from over 100 images of Mars taken by Viking Orbiters in the 1970s. NASA’s Perseverance rover began its long journey to Mars at the end of July.
Associated Press

NASA’s Perseverance rover began its long journey to Mars at the end of July, and later today it will finally reach its destination.

Though the current state of technology doesn’t permit us to watch the landing live as it occurs, CNN reports that NASA is inviting the world to experience the historic moment live through a countdown and landing commentary stream.

How to watch:

What to expect:

NBC News reports that the car-size rover will become NASA’s fifth rover to touch down on Mars and will lead the space agency’s most ambitious mission yet examining whether life ever existed on the red planet.

According to the site, only about half of all prior attempts to land a spacecraft on the red planet have been successful, and Perseverance’s touchdown is a particularly risky one. The rover will be traveling at 12,000 miles per hour once it enters the planet’s atmosphere, and it will be slowed down by a parachute and a series of retrorockets shortly before touchdown.

“If there’s one thing we know, it’s that landing on Mars is never easy,” Marc Etkind, NASA’s associate administrator for communications, said in a statement (via CNN). “But as NASA’s fifth Mars rover, Perseverance has an extraordinary engineering pedigree and mission team.”

Space.com reports that, by the time the Perseverance landing is confirmed here on Earth, the rover will have already been on Mars for at least 11 minutes as it takes radio signals about 11 minutes, 22 seconds to travel the distance between Earth and Mars, according to a NASA statement.